Monday, September 20, 2010

The 2010 3-Day: The Season Continues ...

Hello, walkers!

The second half of the 3-Day "season" kicks off this weekend in Seattle! Beware of men throwing fish!

I walked Chicago this year, as I have every year since 2005. And the funny thing about walking so early in the schedule is that I'm prone to forgetting that there are so many more walks left in the year, so many more walkers who are continuing to fundraise, continuing to gather gear, and possibly continuing to fret about whether they're truly up for what appears to many non-walkers to be, well, more than a little crazy.

So, I wanted to pop in to say:

Woooooooo! Go, walkers!

That's what I'd be yelling if I were standing alongside a route, cheering walkers as they traipsed by. So let's consider this a virtual route. Oh, look! Here's comes another one of you!

Woooooooo! Go, walkers! Wooooooooo!

I understand the trepidation. I do. I've been there. I'm still there, a little bit, every year. I usually do the event "alone." I don't sign up as part of a team. I often show up at Opening Ceremonies with no plans to meet up with anyone.

But every year, I meet amazing people. This year, I began the event with Kristy and Erin and ended the event with Michael, very much a 3-Day celebrity. Predictably, Michael and his wife – and 3-Day crew captain – Monica have become fast friends of mine. It's one of the happy side-effects of the 3-Day, the formed friendships.

And this year, I really questioned whether I'd be able to complete the event. I am not in the best of shape these days.

And you know what? I didn't walk every mile. I walked 45 of the 60. And you know what? That's just fine.

Some years – most years – I walk every step.

This year, my body wasn't able to do that. And I listened to it. And the event was just as special as every other.

So, my walker friends, don't fret. Fretting is not a part of the 3-Day universe.

Gather your gear and pack your bags and make your way to Opening Ceremonies and let the experience unfold.

There is support every step of the way. Veteran walkers and a slew of crew along the route, at intersections, in Pit Stops, in Grab-and-Gos, and in camp are there for you.

People transform from strangers into friends in mere moments on the 3-Day.

It's amazing.

So, as my friend Gemma says, "plenty of Kleenex" and "surrender to the schmaltz."

You're in for three of the most incredible days of your life.

It's not about walking every step. It's about being there.

Always remember, walkers, you are awesome.

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2 Comments:

Anonymous Sharon Ellis said...

Wow! And THANK YOU! I'm typing this through tears because you touched my heart.

I'm a first-time walker in Atlanta this year. Just over 4 weeks away from the 3-Day. And I've been training since March but I've been fretting because I'm "only" up to 12 miles of walking at a time. This coming weekend is our 18/15 back to back and I don't know if I can do it.

I promised my husband I wouldn't hurt myself in training or on the 3-Day. I know in my mind that it's not about walking all 60 miles but you helped me really feel that.

I lost my Mom to breast cancer 20 years ago and this has been very emotional. Thank you for reminding me why we're walking.

4:59 PM  
Blogger Beth said...

Sharon, what a lovely comment. Thank you.

Indeed, it's not about walking every step. Don't fret with the training. Just listen to your body on the event. For me, when I feel like stopping, I check my route card and think, "I can walk 2 more miles." I do the whole event that way, a series of small walks.

And if you hit your limit for the day, there's always someone available to transport you to a pit stop or back to camp.

It's amazing, what you're doing, especially having lost your mom. The 3-Day is so very emotional. Know that everyone is really, truly supportive. (And pack travel packs of Kleenex. You'll need them.)

Hugs.

5:10 PM  

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